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Comments are for the page: (To be continued…)
This story is brilliant - wonderful writing style, good solid knowledge base and full rounded characters. Thankyou so much for sharing, I can’t wait until it’s finished and and more than up for a personally signed copy when you get it in print! ;)
Thank you very much! I am glad you are enjoying it. I’m urgently looking forward to the next episode myself :-)
We know you’re busy but please write more of Vetali’s Gift!!! Please don’t leave us longing forever…
Thank you for the appreciation! My hope is that I can start writing the novel again in January or February.
In the mean time, one of its main characters will star in a post on my Wordpress blog soon! Within the next week or two, I expect. That post is complete, but there’s a couple of others that precede it in the sequence, and they aren’t quite ready yet.
I had more fun with that (semi-fictional) post than anything else I’ve written in past year, and maybe that motivates me to get back to The Vetali’s Gift.
When do you reckon you’ll complete the story? I wish to start reading it, but to me, the suspense of the cliff-hanger is more agonizing than the indefinite delay. Hopefully I won’t have to wait out till my hair is all gray – it’s only 91.502% so now, but the turnover is gradual from here on in. Or worse still, have no choice but to turn into a vampire in order to buy time. That would be all your fault. Can you bear the burden of guilt? No? Then I beseech you to give the novel the time of day and cross the finish line soon.
Btw, I had to quickly skip the above 4 comments in order to get here, but I glimpsed a line giving it high praise. All the more reason why you have to finish it soon, before I die and am forced to come back and haunt you.
Thanks for your enthusiasm! I’m sure I am even more impatient than you are. Unfortunately, I get little time to write, and I have been prioritizing Meaningness over this project. It’s impossible for me to know when, or whether, I’ll ever get enough time to finish the novel. Sorry about that!
1) Okay, I’ll post a comment on the Meaningness website, probably tomorrow. You are so prolific, I can hardly catch up.
2) I believe we live in the same city. If there’s anything I can do to help, let me know. I’m a proficient typist. Other than that, I’m lazy to the bone. But I like you enough to want to chip in. So don’t take my future comments in a negative way. I wouldn’t have bothered writing in if I hadn’t found you worthy of the effort. Oh, and that’s not to say that I see myself on the same level as you. You’re out of my league, truly.
From your twitter feed, I gather you’re restarting work on this novel. Yes, I’d like to see more of it.
You reading all those “how to write a sex scene” books seems a little .. excessive. The one piece of advice I’d have is to check that the scene makes sense (motives etc) from the perspective of all the characters, including the women.
Less seriously: somewhere in all the stuff you retweeted, someone came up with the idea of “furry tantra”, on the assumption that both the furries and tantrics are sex-positive. It was a joke, of course. Still, if you have a yidam that is some kind of anthro, furry karmamudra would, I think, be fairly orthodox. I wonder if Hayagriva would count.
Which then leads we to wonder what the Hugo award nominated author Chuck Tingle would have done with this material … “Pounded in the butt by the Buddha”, probably,
seems a little… excessive
seems a little… excessive
In my defense, excess is a fundamental principle of tantra :)
Actually, though, I had concluded within about three hours that there’s nothing worthwhile written about this. After that, I continued to read only out of a combination of amusement and incredulity. It seems that there’s much demand for “how to write romance/erotica” from people who want to do that (presumably because they enjoy reading it, and/or have noticed that it’s the most commercially successful genre of book writing). However, apparently there’s nothing useful that can be said about it, so there’s a vast number of non-useful guides (some of them commercially successful). I found it really funny how bad they are.
But also conceptually intriguing, that there’s nothing to say. I mean, why isn’t there? English teachers make a big fuss about how writing is a craft, blah, blah, and I’ve read several excellent books on non-fiction writing, but if there is any craft to writing fiction, no one seems able to articulate it.
If I thought of myself as “a writer” I’d probably be more intimidated by the chapter than I am. It’s ludicrously technically complicated. Since I’m a total amateur and have no pretensions to more, I don’t feel I have to do a correctly literary job.
Among other complications, although there are only two people physically involved, the event has separate implications for the relationships among at least nine of the novel’s characters, each of which needs to be adequately foreshadowed without giving away too much of the overall plot, or distracting from the narrative of the scene. I’ve had to make a spreadsheet to keep track.
There’s also the difficulty in making a comparative linguistics lecture erotic. It’s still possible I’ll fail at that. (Does the scene really have to include an in-depth discussion of recursive center-embedding of relative clauses? Only time will tell.)
I didn’t really get a choice about including all this though. You can have a romance novel without a sex scene (although that’s a bit old fashioned). It’s probably not really possible to have a vampire romance novel without a sex scene, since vampires are all about transgressive sex, metaphorically. It also doesn’t seem like you could have a tantric romance novel without a sex scene. And a tantric vampire romance without a sex scene would just be unreasonably anomalous.
I don’t know, maybe pulling that off would be a more interesting technical challenge than complicating the relationships among nine characters in the course of a single two-person event!
Vajrayana is big on animal-headed deities, and they are often depicted in yab-yum. Other non-humanoid body parts are also quite common. Furry-all-over, I don’t think I’ve seen! No reason why not, as far as I can see.
A lecture on Sanskrit grammar in the middle of a sex scene would fit the deadpan comedy tone of the rest of the novel; like having the vetali going into a long philosophical explanation of what an epistemologist is while being about to eat a dead one.
Thanks for confirming what I suspected about vajrayana for furries. Yamantaka has the head of a buffalo and is often shown in yab yub., so definitely counts as furry sex (furry sex with a vetali, even). Simhamukha is a lion-headed dakini. I’ve only ever seen her shown dancing alone (and I don’t have the empowerment to know what her practice is). On the rough assumption she’s basically vajrayogini in a fursuit, she would also seem to potentially qualify. (Ok, she might rather be an emmanation of Guru Rinpoche in a fursuit).
“I mean, when the old guard at Nalanda dies, the younger faculty can teach new doctrines and practises”.
As I read that, I’m thinking: Surya has been (anachronistically) reading Thomas Kuhn’s Structure of Scientific Revolutions.. A day or two passes, and I see your twitter again: yep, gratuitous Thomas Kuhn.
I wonder if this is actually an improvement over all those “how to write a sex scene” books, or even worse.
P.S. From the conventional hagiographies of the postmodernists, I had gathered that Georges Canguilhem, rather than de Gandillac, was the principal intellectual influence. (Or should that be from a namthar of Derrida…)
Slightly more seriously....
Negative Theology -> Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite -> Nicholas of Cusa -> Mauruce de Gandillac -> (Foucault, Derrida, Lyotard, Deleuze)
On my bookshelves at home I have Pseudo-Dionysius in the same section as Derrida’s Of Grammatology.
I love all of your websites, but this one in particular. Willing to do anything it takes to get more of this from you. Evidently your tantra is too powerful for death threats to be effective so I can only hope praise and pleading work. Humor and horror are in the exact right mix here.
O yes i do wish foe more - Magazine
A real masterpiece, and very insightful as well. Thanks for all the trouble you are taking and hope we can keep enjoying so great teachings in the shape of a novel.
Just finished it :( it was really good, can’t wait for more! may y’all be well and happy
Thank you so much for this journey. As you’ve alluded to earlier, stories bring meaning to the heart. I believe that this story is truly something great, and could one day become an enduring classic in the annals of modern buddhism. Not that I’m trying to appeal to your ego or anything, but really, tantric buddhism could benefit from so many things, not least this story. Or this kind of story.
Would you really give up on us like this? :(
I’d love to write more, and hope and expect I will!
Unfortunately, I don’t get a lot of time to write, and it’s hard to decide which of my 1/3-finished writing projects is most important.
The most recent chapter was “only” six months ago (Halloween 2022). There’s about 20 chapters to go, so if I manage two per year I may finish before I die :)
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